A Sydney Uber driver has been jailed for raping a passenger.

When an intoxicated young woman woke up in a moving car after leaving her friends on a night out in Kings Cross she thought she was safely on her way home in a taxi.

Instead, she was being driven to a dark side street in Sydney’s eastern suburbs where she would be raped by Uber driver Muhammad Naveed.

“Hey baby, I’ve got some condoms,” Naveed told the victim, who was drifting in and out of sleep after drinking heavily throughout the day.

The 41-year-old Pakistani national on Tuesday was jailed for at least six years and four months for the October 2015 rape of the young woman who can’t be named for legal reasons.

“He clearly took advantage, in the most terrible way, of a very vulnerable young lady,” Judge Deborah Payne told the Downing Centre District Court during her sentencing remarks.

“She was entitled to feel safe in the taxi.”

The woman was partying with friends in Kings Cross after a day at the Randwick races and was heavily intoxicated when she was picked up by Naveed.

The court heard the woman had leant up against a street sign to remove her shoes and began walking along Bayswater Road.

She did not order an Uber and did not remember getting into the car.

At first, she thought it was a taxi and gave Naveed her address, but instead of driving her home he stopped at a service station to buy condoms and a bottle of water.


He later pulled off a main road into a side street and moved the victim into the back seat.

She said she woke up with Naveed on top of her in the back seat, raping her. The victim tried to push him off her but he continued.

“She tried to say ‘No, go away, get off’,” Judge Payne said, but she didn’t have the strength to get the words out.

The woman fell back asleep and was woken by Naveed after he had arrived at her home.

Upon getting home, the victim texted her friend, asking him to call her and saying she had had “a pretty horrific night”.

“I kind of got raped by a taxi driver,” she told her friend.

Naveed pleaded not guilty to the charges, claiming the sex was consensual.

“I’m not a rapist, I did not do anything intentionally,” he told police.

Naveed received a maximum sentence of nine years but will be eligible for parole in June 2023.

An Uber spokeswoman said the company worked with local police to support their investigation and banned Naveed as a driver as soon as they learned of the incident.

“This is a terrible crime and we are grateful justice has been served,” the spokeswoman said in a statement to AAP.

“Our thoughts remain with the victim and her family.”